Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Depression Gene Found by Doctors Evidence Homes in on Major Disorder

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Depression Gene Found by Doctors Evidence Homes in on Major Disorder

Article excerpt

The largest study of its kind has found the approximate location of a gene that may be responsible for manic-depression, a disorder estimated to affect more than 2 million Americans.

Scientists found evidence that a gene somewhere in a particular part of chromosome 21 promotes the disease in at least one of the 47 families they studied.

Although investigators are reasonably confident that such a gene exists there, nobody can be sure until other research teams confirm the results, one of the researchers, Dr. Miron Baron, said Monday. Baron is director of psychogenetics at the New York State Psychiatric Institute, which is part of the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York.

Baron and colleagues at Columbia and in Israel report their findings in the November issue of the journal Nature Genetics. Their study was the largest yet reported that sought a statistical link between manic-depression and a gene, they said.

Dr. Wade Berrettini of Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, who reported evidence in June that a manic-depression gene lies on chromosome 18, agreed that confirming studies would be essential. …

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